The health hazards of drinking – what diseases can it lead to?

April 9, 2021

The health hazards of drinking – what diseases can it lead to?

What does habitual heavy drinking do to the body?

Drinking alcohol causes alcohol to be absorbed into the body and metabolized into acetaldehyde, a highly toxic substance. This is what makes the body so rusty.

Please refer to another article for more information on alcohol decomposition.

Another article
Decomposition of Alcohol and Acetaldehyde

Possible risks to the body

Since the decomposition of acetaldehyde is done by cells in the liver, it naturally puts a strain on the liver.

This can easily lead to hepatitis. Hepatitis has almost no symptoms. Therefore, if you are unaware of it and continue to consume alcohol even in the state of hepatitis, it can lead to cirrhosis.

Pancreatitis is a disease that is increasing very rapidly these days. Since the pancreas is easily damaged by oxidative stress, continuous heavy drinking can lead to pancreatitis.

Pancreatitis is also good if it is cured only once, but if it occurs repeatedly, it can turn into chronic pancreatitis. This is a condition in which the pancreas becomes so hardened that it is unable to produce insulin or digest food, similar to cirrhosis of the liver.

Alcohol, after all, rusts the body anyway. This increases the risk of developing cancer anywhere in the body.

For example, the risk of esophageal cancer and stomach cancer increases because alcohol passes directly through the esophagus and stomach, which are naturally damaged.

However, it is also known that the risk of lung cancer, breast cancer, and colon cancer, which are not directly passed through alcohol, is also very high. Therefore, it can be said that consuming large amounts of alcohol over a long period of time is extremely likely to lead to cancer.

The next major problem is dementia.

The brain is the most susceptible organ to oxidative stress, so if you consume large amounts of alcohol for a long period of time, your brain will also be damaged. Therefore, the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is very high.


Heavy drinking can be very dangerous if it becomes habitual. It is important to consider that prolonged heavy consumption of alcohol can make you susceptible to all possible diseases.

The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) recommends an appropriate amount of alcohol: “For Japanese people with normal alcohol metabolism, the average daily amount of pure alcohol is about 20 grams of moderate drinking”. This is the same as a medium bottle of beer.

This is about one medium bottle of beer, one gou of sake, one 350ml bottle of soju-hai, or one double shot of whiskey. Please try to keep this amount in mind.

The next day, when you feel like you have had too much to drink, it is recommended that you do not drink alcohol to give your liver a rest.